As technology advances, individuals find new ways to exploit others. One quickly growing type of scam is “check washing” – a form of check fraud that can cause financial harm.
Defining Check Washing and Why it is a Rising Fraud Trend
Check washing is a form of fraud where individuals alter a legitimate check by using special chemical solvents that effectively erase or ‘wash’ the check’s original details. Then, individuals will rewrite the check to make it payable to themselves and add an altered amount.
This type of fraud has become increasingly common in recent years due to its simplicity and relatively low risk — the only equipment required is a simple printer and chemicals.
What Makes Check Washing Difficult to Detect
Check washing scams can be incredibly difficult to detect as individuals have become increasingly savvy with modern technology. With the check washing method, individuals can erase all data traces while ensuring the document still has its original appearance. Additionally, individuals will often target higher-value checks as they are both more attractive and carry less risk of being discovered.
The Consequences of Check Washing
The consequences for individuals accused of check washing can be severe. Depending on the individual’s history with the law, they may face jail or prison time if found guilty of this fraud offense. The person may also be subject to monetary fines, as well as an extended period of probation. In some cases, the person can face civil penalties such as restitution and court-ordered debt repayment plans.
Aside from potential legal ramifications, people accused of check washing may also experience long-lasting damage to their reputation and career prospects since it is considered a severe crime for businesses or financial institutions.
What to Do if You Are Suspected of Check Washing
If you are suspected of committing check washing, it is important to take immediate action. An experienced white-collar crime lawyer can provide the legal support and representation needed to protect your rights and interests.
The Texas criminal defense attorneys at The Law Offices of Jed Silverman have a thorough understanding of the laws related to financial fraud as well as strategies for defending against such charges. We can review the evidence and facts of your case, provide counsel on how to plead and which defenses may be available, and navigate you through the criminal justice system. We can also help negotiate a plea bargain or reduce sentences in cases where a conviction is unavoidable.
The best defense against a check washing charge is to hire The Law Offices of Jed Silverman. Schedule a consultation online or by phone to work towards the best possible outcome for your case. (713) 597-2221